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Does this backstory make sense?

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Darkfantasy, Jun 29, 2019.

  1. Darkfantasy

    Darkfantasy Inkling

    Quick back story of my story's plot. I just wanted to know if it sounds feasible and interesting. Does anything sound unrealistic and need re-working?

    It's not set on earth, but on a planet very similar with no real magic, other than the kind of magic witches used in our medieval times which wasn't that powerful or reliable. People didn't believe in the Gods, they believed in the spirit world and “The Saints” (deities that run the spirit world). They believe in reincarnation and that the body dies but the spirit does not. Others did not believe in the spirit world at all, as it's uncommon to remember past lives. (can't think of a reason why yet).

    Once a thriving place, the planet was whipped in chaos when an asteroid struck and knocked out most of the world's population. But this asteroid came from another place, a solar system with magical planets and is teaming with a chemical element that is the foundation of all magic. When the asteroid was still hot, the ice that contained the chemical turned into water droplets and went into the atmosphere. Some remained deep under ground with the asteroid. Magic began to shape the planet and the surviving humans. Understanding and wielding this new substance became this civilizations main focus. Some people seemed to have a natural ability to control this power and they studied the substance, and when one man was able to resurrect his dead dog, everyone began to see just how powerful it could be.

    The impact site became a war ground, everyone fighting for ownership of this substance. One side won.

    But magic wasn't the only thing the asteroid brought, it also brought another substance that caused a gradual decline in the health of those exposed. So the people of the losing side where enslaved and forced to mine for the magic.

    (Obviously this takes places over many, many years)

    Thank you for your time and input x
    Gotis likes this.
  2. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

    No problems, but a couple of questions.

    I don't see the connection between the physical event of the asteroid and the system of beliefs around spirits. Surely the one would have some effect on the other. With the asteroid wiping out most of the planet, would that create a new set of myths?

    Is it necessary there be a second substance? What if the material that brings the magic also is harmful to the health? Not a recommendation, just a question.

    Is there a reason why some have the natural ability to control the new power? Or a reason why some cannot?
    Night Gardener and Darkfantasy like this.
  3. Riva

    Riva Minstrel

    Interesting it is, if it's feasible that depends on what level of feasibility you're aiming for. As long as it retain internal consistency it should be good.

    Just a few questions out of curiosity (maybe they'll also help fleshing out your backstory):

    What happened to the old magic (the witch type magic) after the asteroid impact? Is it still practiced? Or the new magic turned out to be just better? Or maybe the new substance made possible for new interactions and hybrid types of magic to emerge?

    How did the old magic system work? Is there another source of magic?

    How do people control the substance? How does it react with other elements and compounds?
    Maybe you could further explore the nature of this magical substance.
    And on the same note, what are the effects of the harmful substance?

    Lastly a suggestion for the reincarnation thing: try reading Plato, it might give you some ideas.

    And sorry for my english in case you spot some mistakes.
  4. I like the overall idea. More than dissecting plot and backstory I like to, when I can, try to point out possible threads not yet woven from what is already abundant and waiting there. :) And since you are undecided upon the reasons for or against past life remembrances. . .

    Depending on when your story picks up along the historic timeline of events. . . What if the asteroid/magic had enabled some of the old believers in witch-like magic or in a spiritual life to gain partial to total recall of their past lives and what if the experiencing of those past lives allowed them to recall, through their regressions, that distant and buried past. The stronger the magic they cultivate, the further back they can travel. This while those who have cultivated hard magic and turned it into a weapon for enslavement and control are now fighting to keep that past from coming to light? The asteroid, the war, the cataclysm, the manipulation etc etc, the truth of which had been kept from the masses by the winning side following the war.

    Perhaps no-one in the current timeline has knowledge of those near-cataclysmic events and the struggle for power that followed. Those events are mere myth themselves now, passed down orally and with meaning to the powerless. But then a few begin to relive them through the past life experiences.

    If no-one knows the asteroid caused their abilities, then it becomes a pitched battle of their trust in the truth of those visions being believed over the power of the hard magic that has been gained and wielded by others.

    It can be the very same element that created both. Giving hard magic to people who did not have the insight for such spiritual belief while giving the past life ability to those that did. Faith, as an active and not passive magic, could be powerful.

    In your world building, the resulting split in the powers harnessed could be two sides of the same rare elemental introduction. Or perhaps, from another angle, it was the asteroid itself that caused the loss of the ability to recall past lives and even the loss of the power of the true old magic itself?

    All over the place and many random thoughts and ideas, I know, but that all came to me quick given what you have already offered.

    Best of luck with your world! :)
    Night Gardener and Darkfantasy like this.

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